Bar Rescue - The Kasbah - OPEN

The Kasbah Bar Rescue

In this Bar Rescue episode, Jon Taffer visits The Kasbah in Denver, Colorado.

The Kasbah is owned by Shelton Bauknight.

He invested his 401(k) to open up the first old-school dance club in the area in 1997.

The Kasbah was an overnight success.

For the first couple years, Shelton says they were averaging around $85,000 a month in sales and over $800,000 a year.

Over time, the older clientele stopped coming to the club due to their age.

To make up for the loss of original clientele, Shelton tried to target this bar towards a younger crowd.

The younger customers brought more problems than successes.

There had been many fights, some of which had the cops get involved.

Shelton lets his staff run amok.

Workers began slacking off because they feel like they can get away with it.

Shelton is now $130,000 in debt.

Shelton thinks that there is hope but if he doesn’t get the help then he won’t make it.

Out of money and overrun by a dangerous crowd, Shelton makes a call for help to Bar Rescue.

Nine miles east of downtown Denver sits its largest suburb, Aurora, Colorado.

Aurora has a population of 330,000 and a median age of 33.

This area is filled with single adults.

For the kitchen, Jon has brought in expert chef Aaron McCargo.

For the bar, Jon brings in expert mixologist Elayne Duff.

Jon goes online to see how previous customers feel about coming to this bar.

Jon brings in locals for tonight’s recon.

The Kasbah is a 5,8000-square-foot nightclub with a dance floor and a stage.

This bar has a horseshoe bar with three speed wells and four beers on tap.

The recon team pays to get into the nightclub.

The sound system sucks and there is no club atmosphere.

There is too much alcohol in the drinks.

There are waitresses who are just standing there, making the customers have to get their own food.

Shelton is nowhere to be found.

There is a creepy guy hitting on the recon team and he won’t leave when they tell him to.

Security won’t do anything about the issues and a fight is about to break out.

Jon decides that now is the right time to walk into the bar.

Jon talks to Shelton about how the bar got to be this bad.

Shelton is losing around $8,000 a month.

He’s not surprised by how his staff aren’t working well.

Jon threatens the security guard’s job for not protecting the girl.

They go into the kitchen to see how gross it is back there.

Jon tells the cook that he needs to clean the kitchen like how it should’ve been in the first place.

Shelton admits that he has to become more involved.

Jon meets with the staff to discuss what they think is the problem.

The waitresses and bartenders says that there was no proper training here.

Security guard Angel says that he thinks the biggest problem is the dress code.

Training begins before the bar opens for stress test.

Elayne shows the bartenders how to do a high pour.

Elayne says that it’s very obvious that they’ve never been trained.

Jon brings in a third expert, Doc, who specializes in security.

Doc says that you have to pat down everyone in order to make sure the customers don’t sneak in alcohol or drugs.

Jon brings in the targeted younger audience for stress test.

The Kasbah opens up for stress test.

Security isn’t patting down properly and a couple customers have snuck in alcohol.

Jon made them do this.

The bartenders are struggling to do better during stress test.

Cook Chino is putting too much food on the plates.

Security is still letting people in who sneak in liquor bottles.

Shelton fires Ron, the security guy.

Jon says that it was nice to see Shelton get mad about it.

After stress test, Jon meets with Shelton to discuss financial issues.

Elayne shows the bartenders drinks that will be added to the new menu including the DJ Mix and King’s Crown.

These drinks will help attract the younger crowd.

Aaron shows them some new recipes that will be added to the menu.

Doc trains a new person for security related stuff.

Jon goes over the plan for the remodel with Shelton.

Construction has begun on the Kasbah’s remodel.

The next night, Jon brings the staff to the Kasbah to show them their new bar.

They kept the name of the bar but made the outside of the bar more modern.

Shelton says that he’s happy that they kept the name.

Jon tells the staff to head inside.

The inside of the bar looks amazing.

Jon installed a brand-new sound system and lighting and a Crown Maple Chilled Shot machine.

There is a new POS system just for the waitresses.

Kaprecca says that this POS system will make this easier for everyone.

There’s a brand-new service station, which Jon says will double the one transaction per customer.

Shelton says thank you.

Jon says that Shelton is one of the most appreciative people he’s ever worked with and he says this makes him feel great.

The staff in the kitchen begins preparing for the relaunch.

The Kasbah opens up for the first time since remodel.

On relaunch, there is a whole crowd of people waiting to get in.

Everyone is excited to walk into the bar.

Jazmine and Cici have really stepped up their game.

They’re paying attention to customers and they are smiling.

Customers are saying this bar is much classier.

Security has stepped up a lot.

However, there is attitude in the kitchen between the staff.

Shelton takes Diego outside to ask what is happening and he tells Diego that he needs to go.

Jon says that Shelton has lit up tonight.

He says that this proves that Shelton can run this place.

Jon hugs Shelton and says that his work is done.


What Happened Next at The Kasbah?

Two months later, the Kasbah is filled to capacity every weekend.

There are no longer security incidents.

The Kasbah is making up to $7,000 to $10,000 a night.

In a Back to the Bar episode, it is revealed that Shelton has repaid all of his debts.

He has used the profits to open a restaurant so they can offer food.

Shelton has continued to make improvements at the club.

The Kasbah is open.

There was a shooting outside the nightclub in May 2018.

They were commended by Hennessy for being the best seller of the liquor in the state of Colorado.

Reviews are mostly positive.


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This post was last updated in September 2021.

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